How Old Do You Have To Be To Work At USPS? (+ Other FAQs)

Federal employers have an excellent reputation for being equal opportunity employers and offering wonderful benefits, including USPS. But, if you’re looking to get a job at USPS, you may have some questions.

Like, how old do you have to be to get a job at USPS? And what are the other requirements for employment? I’ve looked into the matter, and here’s everything I discovered!

How Old Do You Have To Be To Work at USPS? 

As a general rule of thumb, to work at USPS, you must be 18 years old. USPS occasionally hires as young as 16, provided they have their high school diplomas. Other requirements for working at the post office include having citizenship in the US and passing a written exam, drug screening, and background check.

If you’re looking to get a job at USPS, be sure to keep reading so you know what to expect and how to land the job you want!

Can a 16-Year-Old Work at USPS?

USPS generally only hires people who are 18 years old or older. However, USPS will occasionally hire younger people.

That said, the absolute youngest age that USPS will hire is 16. But, to be hired at 16, you must have your high school diploma or an equivalent, such as a GED.

So, USPS generally hires at 18 because workers handle an incredible amount of mail every day and, by proxy, have a lot of responsibility.

Typically, USPS reserves these positions for someone who is legally an adult.

However, USPS recognizes that there are instances where people who are 16 years old can handle the job and may very well need it.

What Are the Requirements For Working at USPS?

What Are The Requirements For Working At USPS?

Because USPS is a federal agency, it has stricter work requirements than other employers for candidates to be considered.

First and foremost, a candidate must be at least 18 years old or as young as 16 years old, provided they have their high school diploma.

Also, the candidate in question must be a citizen of the United States and have lived in the United States for at least five years.

In addition to citizenship and age requirements, USPS mandates a background check, drug screening, and physical assessment.

Further, you will pass the background check as long as there have been no misdemeanors in the past three years or felonies in the past five years.

Still, a failed background check does not necessarily disqualify you for employment by the USPS.

On the other hand, the drug screening can disqualify you if you fail.

Moreover, the purpose of the physical assessment is typically just to see if you’re up to the task of whatever USPS position you’re applying for.

For example, if you’re applying to be a mail carrier, the purpose of the physical assessment is to ensure that you can spend long days on your feet while carrying around a bag that can weigh a lot.

On top of that, most USPS positions require that candidates for employment pass a written exam about the position they’re applying for.

So, if you’re worried about having to pass your written exam, there are plenty of free study materials out there, some of which are here!

Also, there are requirements that a candidate must meet surrounding their driving record if they’re applying for a mail carrier position or another position that involves operating a postal service vehicle.

Typically, an applicant must have a valid driver’s license and must not have been involved in a wreck for at least three years.

Finally, you must provide a list of employment over the past five years that includes the place of employment, position, job description, and dates, along with employer contact information so the post office can verify any information.

How Do You Get a Job at USPS?

Once you’ve verified that you meet all of the general requirements as well as the listed requirements for the specific position you’re interested in, you’re ready to start formally applying!

That said, USPS posts all open job positions on its job site, which you can find here.

To apply to jobs using the USPS eCareers site, you’ll need to make a candidate account with a visible profile.

Once you’ve provided all of the information for your account, you can begin looking for open jobs.

Then, you can use the filter feature next to the search bar on the eCareers website to filter jobs by job title, location, or any keywords you’d like.

However, most of the job listings on the eCareers website don’t have job descriptions attached.

So, if you’d like to see what the responsibilities would be for a job position before you apply, you can check out this page of the American Postal Workers Union site.

After you’ve found a position you’re interested in, you can apply!

Once you apply, any pertinent testing information, as well as a date for a drug screening, will be forwarded to you.

Remember, you must pass your drug screen and receive a qualifying score on your exam. Still, passing the drug screen and your exam does not guarantee you a position at USPS.

Additionally, it’s important to remember that it can take a while to hear back after applying for a position.

For example, some employees report waiting a month or two after completing all of the steps to receive a job offer from USPS!

When applying for a position with USPS, ensure that you’re prepared to meet all of the requirements and be patient until you hear back from them.

If you want to know more, you can also see our posts on whether or not USPS is a federal job, if USPS is a good job, and USPS background check policy.

Photo of author

Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of

Leave a Comment